If It Ain’t Broke, Don’t Fix It [TWIEB #4]

In the latest edition of This Week in Engagement Banking comes a spot-on look at the legacy problem within large financials via a recent piece by David Bannister in Banking Technology. We especially identified with this statement: “…they [big banks] are also strong believers in the old maxim, ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’. The result is that most organizations have a raft of systems held together by sealing wax and string.”

Other highlights this week include our advisor, Bank 2.0 and Movenbank founder, Brett King’s launch of his latest book on the death of branch banking, as well as, a lively post about how some banks are dealing with Twitter feedback – hint, hint – not so successfully.

Big Banks Struggle to Help Customers on Twitter
The ‘Bucks Blog’ from the New York Times recently reported that Twitter is proving to be a vexing customer service tool for big banks. According to a new report from Javelin Strategy & Research on banks’ use of social media, customers seem to like the speed and directness of sending a question or complaint to their bank by Twitter, but banks must weigh the implications of responding quickly with the need to protect a customer’s personal and financial information, like bank account numbers. As a result, they’re ‘struggling’ with how to best use the service, Javelin found.

Managing Complexity, Living With Legacy Systems
Banking Technology’s
David Bannister discusses the issue of legacy systems within financial organizations. “A combination of new technologies, systematic methodologies and sheer necessity is driving firms to finally address their legacy issues. For as long as anyone can remember, the financial technology world has had to get to grips with the problems caused by the plethora of legacy systems in use in most organizations. Banks have always been heavy users of technology, but they are also strong believers in the old maxim, ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’. The result is that most organizations have a raft of systems held together by sealing wax and string,” he writes.

Want Popcorn at the Movies? Try QkR, MasterCard’s New Mobile App
Demo of QkR by MasterCard, the latest smart phone payment pilot app developed in conjunction with Hoyts and Commonwealth Bank.

Which Will Make a Bigger Splash in 2012, Mobile Wallet or EMV?
During the latter half of the past decade, a heated battle has been fought around the world to determine which payment method will take center stage in the coming years. According to a Bank Innovation blog entry by Robert Siciliano, an identity theft expert, many believe mobile payment will leapfrog what is known as EMV, which stands for Euro MC/Visa, or chip and PIN credit card technology, and that soon enough chip and PIN technology will go the way of the magnetic striped credit card.

As he argues, certainly, there are many major companies that have wagered heavily on the presumed success of their chosen technology, and these companies have a vested interest in the failure of their rivals. He thinks there is more than enough room for both Mobile Wallet and EMV.

Branch Today, Gone Tomorrow: The Case for the Death of Branch Banking
Backbase advisor Brett King’s new book has just been released.  In it he once again touches on the lag between what is currently  possible in a Bank 2.0 world and what still holds banks back. Specifically, the new book discusses how, in the wake of the global financial crisis, retail bankers face another equally challenging shift to their business in the near term – the demise of the branch. For example, in the UK, one branch has closed everyday since 1990. In the US, transaction volume in-branch will be down almost 60% from 2006-2015. In developed economies, consumer visits bank branches have been down 80-90%. Yet today most banks spend more than 80% of their channels budget on branch real estate, staffing and support.

With that we bid you adieu for this week!

Image provided by chaitanya via www.deviantart.com

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Sara Palmbush

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